Trust in Mind

Sengcan, the Third Ancestor

Listening to a series of excellent dharma talks from the San Francisco Zen Center, I first learned about the ancient poem “Trust in Mind”1 by the Third Ancestor of the Zen tradition, Jianzhi Sengcan (鑑智僧璨)

It captures beautifully, even in translation, the essence of Zen.

“The Perfect Way is only difficult for those who pick and choose;
Do not like, do not dislike; all will then be clear.
Make a hairbreadth difference, and Heaven and Earth are set apart;
If you want the truth to stand clear before you, never be for or against.”

Sengcan (鑑智僧璨) Xinximing, Trust in Mind

  1. Full text of the poem, “Xinxinming”. [return]
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About Alan Duncan
Ertswhile physician. Musician. Polymath. Language geek. French C2. Russian B2. Contact me here if you must.